2019 Conference – pre-arrival information

(The information below has also been sent out to all registered attendees by email)

We look forward to welcoming you in Manchester. Below we give some general information and then some specific information for those presenting papers.

General Information

The conference venue is the Alliance Manchester Business School (AMBS), about 15 minutes’ walk from both Manchester Piccadilly and Oxford Road Stations. There is a regular bus service, the 147, from outside Manchester Piccadilly (on the other side of Fairfield Street from the taxi rank) to the campus. The AMBS building is about 20 minutes from Manchester Airport by taxi. There are also frequent trains to Manchester Piccadilly (and slightly less so to Manchester Oxford Road) from the airport station. There is also a light rail/tram link to the city centre but this is a stopping service on a circular commuter route and takes almost an hour from the airport to the city centre.

The building is on the main Oxford Road campus of the University of Manchester. The entrance is via University Green or Booth Street West, facing the Crowne Plaza hotel. We’ve put together a Google Map showing the venue, some of the hotels we recommended and some food and drink recommendations for the Oxford Road area.


The registration desk will open from 12.00 noon on Monday 9th September and light refreshments will be provided on arrival.

There is no formal conference dinner but there will be a drinks reception with canapés on Monday evening (18.30-19.30). The conference reception has been sponsored by the ‘Political Science’ blog (formerly The Guardian ‘Political Science’ blog).

The map linked above also contains some food and drink recommendations in the vicinity of the conference venue and recommended hotels.

All sessions and the reception take place within the AMBS building. The building is fully accessible but if you have significant mobility impairments please be aware that there are two separate lifts between the ground floor (plenaries, some coffee breaks) and the second floor Hive (registration, coffee breaks on the first day and the reception) on the one hand, and Hive and the parallel session rooms on the fourth floor. In other words there is no direct lift or stair access from the fourth floor parallel session rooms to the ground floor areas except via the Hive.

Water fountains are available throughout the building. Cups are not provided – please bring your own bottle and help us reduce waste! Tea and coffee will be provided in scheduled breaks. There will be light pastries on arrival on the Monday and a light lunch after the close of the conference on Tuesday. There is a cafe on the ground floor, just inside the entrance. This is open until 5pm. There are also several independent cafes located outside the building on the adjacent ‘University Green’, and a Costa Coffee within the Blackwells Bookshop there.

There is a prayer/multi-faith room located on the 2nd floor.

The 2nd floor (Hive) has a range of social and work spaces and there is also a quiet work/study area on the fourth floor (near the parallel session rooms) should you require a quiet space to work during the conference.

The conference hashtag will be #ASSIST19 – we encourage responsible tweeting so please make clear if any remark or comment is to be considered ‘off-the-record’. Eduroam wifi is available throughout the building. We can request a temporary log-in for non-Eduroam users – please ask at the registration desk on arrival.

There is no fire drill scheduled to take place during the conference so if the alarm sounds please evacuate following the directions of the conference team and fire marshals.

Additional Information for Presenters/Chairs

We have not allocated chairs for the sessions – we ask that the presenter who is scheduled to speak last please act as chair for each session. As a chair, you must make sure your session starts and finishes on time and that everyone is given an equal amount of time for presenting. Most parallel sessions are 1hr 30mins with 3 (or sometimes 4) papers. The final session on Tuesday is 2hrs, with 4 papers per session. We suggest 15-20 minutes per paper plus 10 minutes Q&A for a 3 paper, 1hr 30mins session. The chair should also take responsibility in the event of a fire alarm. Evacuation information is built into the AV system in each room and can be displayed on screen at the touch of a button. Conference team members will be on hand to assist in the event of a fire alarm.

To ensure that sessions can start promptly please be in the room 10 minutes before your session starts so that you can upload your presentation on the PC. The USB socket is on the front of the PC itself, built into the cabinet in the desk (there is a USB socket for charging only on the plug socket on the desktop). Team members will be around to help with loading up your presentation – please report any AV or technical issue to them. 

We are not providing clickers – we recommend you use the keyboard rather than bring your own clicker to avoid delays and compatibility issues. It is possible to use your own laptop but only HDMI connections are available and you will need to bring your own HDMI cable. We recommend you use the built-in PC but if you do wish to do so again we recommend that you test the setup before the session starts. 

Please do not log out of the PC at the end of your session – please do not shut down the projector/screen

As you will have seen above we are encouraging tweeting during the conference. If you prefer parts of your presentation not to be live tweeted please indicate clearly before starting your presentation.

If you have any questions during the conference, please speak to one of the members of the local organising team – we will be available around the conference spaces or at the registration desk and will be wearing a distinctive badge.

If you have any queries about the programme or anything else, please contact kieron.flanagan@manchester.ac.uk or barbara.ribeiro@manchester.ac.uk